Word: You were born and raised around Manchester in the north of England, a city renowned for its vibrant and entrenched music scene. What do you think is the magic ingredient that makes the city such a prolific music factory?
The people, of course. They are very unique and I have come to appreciate this more so as I have traveled the world. It’s an affordable and, these days, an attractive and forward thinking city that's home to talents who attended University here, like the 'Chemical Brothers' or those who were born and bred like 'New Order'. A plethora of great venues, record shops and a city with a renowned eclectic musical palette are the key ingredients that make Manchester what it is. You very rarely hear about people that visit Manchester and leave without something positive to say about their time in our rainy city.
Word: Where was your first gig? Were you already producing music at the time?
Unlike most of the producers turned DJs, I learnt my trade through playing various bars and dance floors in Manchester. I feel that learning to read a crowd and winning their approval is valuable to who I am as both a DJ and producer today. There are very few DJs who are both great producers and great DJs and vice versa, so my goal is to exceed in both of these areas. DJing can help you learn what makes a track turn a crowd on, where at the same time learning the production process of a track makes you understand the structure of music.
Word: What equipment do you prefer using for your DJ performances, and why?
I'm a lover of vinyl and these days USB for its convenience and long haul international travel. Don't get me wrong, I would prefer to play 100 percent vinyl, but this is just not viable with the restrictions of air travel these days, so this is my best compromise. Plus, I like to use an external looper such as Redclay to bring a new dimension to my sets. Mixer wise, I’m Allen & Heath all the way. This mixer has yet to be beaten for its sound and control of sound.
Word: Your productions and DJ sets are said to be a very eclectic breed of house and techno that incorporates soul, jazz, Latin and more. Have you always focused on this broad range of styles or is it something that has come with time?
These days, I would say that my sets are actually more stripped back and geared to the larger dance floors. As stated before, playing the bar scene and being a Mancunian, my taste buds are wide and vast, sometimes way more than the average DJ you see on the circuit these days. Although this style is appreciated over time, it's very difficult to transcend this sound to the larger audience, so I have adapted to a more energetic audience over time.
Word: You've played in HCMC before, though your gig on the 27th will be the first time playing at the massive Cargo Bar. How did you find the music scene here and what are you looking forward to this time around?
There seems to be a buzz in the air for sure, a real urgency to create something new and progressive in the city. This was one of the main reasons I'm keen to be involved in the coming years, to both help and see the scene grow. I have very similar relationships with other key cities in Asia like Singapore, Bali and Bangkok. I'm a true believer in this promising new scene in Asia and I see the potential of the area becoming a key new market in the dance scene.
Eclectic Aesthetic and Optimus Club present Trus'me on Friday, Sept 27 at Cargo Bar, 7 Nguyen Tat Thanh, Q4. The show starts at 9PM, and entrance is VND100,000.